Some of you may know the whole story about me and country life. For those of you who don't, and are confused by my constant pinings I thought I'd fill you in so that as my dreams become more real around the edges, you understand the pull.
Get out some popcorn people; here's the long version:
When I was 18, I married a boy named Casey.
He, his younger brother Zach and his parents owned a horse ranch down south a ways.
Casey was also a jockey and we spent many, many weekends at poor-boy thoroughbred races all over Utah, Idaho & Wyoming.
Casey also bred & broke horses. He owned a beautiful Stallion named Bo Cephus who had won many awards for constitution & Casey charged $5,000 for one breed. $5,000 then was like $20,000 to me now owing to the fact that we made like $7/hr a piece and lived off of his parents.
Casey was very good with horses and and especially loved the babies which he called "bobodees". In fact, sometimes he called me that strangely enough.
For my 20th birthday, I received a beautiful bridle from Casey's mother and a promise that coming Spring, I would get a filly from Bo-cephus. When she was born, she was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen. I couldn't ride her for 2 years as is customary but I spent much time walking her, brushing her & generally spending all available time getting her ready for training which would begin when she was about 18 months.
Casey and I spent all of our time at the farm. We only lived there for a few months prior to getting married and then eventually purchased our first home about 1/2 mile from there so we could be there all of the time.
At his parent's ranch, there was about 20 acres of land, a huge indoor arena & about 30 horse stalls where people could board horses. My mother-in-law gave riding lessons, both western, dressage & jumping. I took all lessons from her and eventually started giving a few to beginners. Casey even taught me trick riding one winter when we were bored. It was really fun although I landed on my head a lot.
We went camping a lot with the horses, just the two of us. We'd take two horses, and a pack mule and head into the hills. He'd fish and I'd read and we'd eat soup from a can heated over a fire. We'd sleep under the stars. That sort of camping is a lot of work but very enjoyable considering how close you can get to nature. I landed on my head a few times that way also as horses are very skittish of rodents & dead animals in the path. It was worth it.
When we decided to divorce after 4 years, I gave up my little filly, all of my riding gear, tack & traded in everything associated with country-life for the so-called sophistication of the city. I went through a period when I wanted to move to Manhatten and start fresh. I even applied to Syracuse University in New York in attempts to get away from Utah and it's rural association.
About a year after my divorce, I gave away all of my country decor, and anything tangible that would remotely associate me with farmlife. I swore it was beneath me, too hick-ish, and so un-cultured. I even did a really great job at influencing my new boyfriend, now DH, to shed his association with rural America too. He bought doc martens, lucky jeans, stopped wearing those farm caps, and sold his farm truck. I hated going anywhere rural and would stick up my nose at trailer homes, log-pole fences, farm machinery & everything else dusty.
It lasted about 8 years. I don't know why but country life started to look enticing again. I'd drive through the country and admire the beauty; feel the dust in my toes and enjoy it. I remembered how wholesome I felt working on the farm and how great it felt to be dirty with dust & smelling like a horse. I slowly started to remember how it felt to wear riding boots & a straw hat. I remembered how the bridle felt wound around my fingers and the way a horse paws at the ground when he's bored.
DH and I started looking around trying to figure out where we wanted to eventually live. He asked me one day if I wanted to live in a place with a view, or have some land. I pondered it so hard and finally realized I wanted to get back to the land; have a little "hobby farm" - get a horse and teach Nat how to care and ride it.
I finally came to the realization that I never hated rural life. My mind was just doing everything it could to get over the pain of my divorce which was very sharp indeed. Once the pain was over, and I realized that I could actually be Casey's friend should the occasion arise, I found what home really means to me and where we really belong.
DH agrees with me and we both want a farm more than anything. So many things get in our way; money, his job, Nat's education, etc. We're planning for retirement but will be prepared in case something arises earlier. I can only pray.